Elon Musk aims to test SpaceX’s Starship hopper next month, tweets mock-up

SpaceX continues work on its prototype Starship hopper in Boca Chica, Texas, on Wednesday.
(Miguel Roberts / Associated Press)

Elon Musk is aiming to test SpaceX’s Starship hopper in the next four weeks, “which probably means 8 weeks, due to unforeseen issues,” the company’s chief executive said in a tweet Saturday.

Musk also tweeted a mock-up picture of the Starship test vehicle currently under assembly in Boca Chica, Texas.

Musk said the first hopper engine to be fired is almost finished being assembled in California. “Probably fires next month,” Musk said. The engines currently on the Starship hopper are a mix of Raptor development and operational parts, according to Musk.

Starship is the new name of SpaceX’s BFR. Musk described it in a tweet as the spaceship needed “to escape Earth’s deep gravity well.” Musk tweeted the name change on Nov. 19.